Defense attorneys for a 21-year-old suspected gang member accused of murdering a San Francisco father and two of his sons will not be granted a new photo lineup for the witness who identified him, a superior court judge ruled today.
Superior Court Judge Teri Jackson said this morning that the evidence she had been shown did not indicate there had been a reasonable likelihood that the witness had mistakenly identified Edwin Ramos, a suspected member of the MS-13 street gang, during a photo lineup after the June 22 murders.
Prosecutors allege Ramos fatally shot Anthony “Tony” Bologna, 48, and his sons Michael, 20, and Matthew, 16. The three were found dead in their car in San Francisco's Excelsior District after a confrontation with the occupants of another vehicle, according to police.
The head of the San Francisco police homicide unit has said that the killings were the result of the Bolognas being mistaken for rival gang members.
Jackson said this morning that the witness, who was also in the victims' car but survived, had been “emotional (at the time) but he did make an identification in a photo spread.”
She said defense attorneys could raise the issue during their cross-examinations at Ramos' preliminary hearing, currently scheduled to begin Nov. 3.
Jackson also said that other witnesses at the scene identified the suspect vehicle — a Chrysler 300 that sped off after the shootings and which was recovered by police when they arrested Ramos days later — and that Ramos had already admitted to police that he drove the vehicle.
Assistant District Attorney Harry Dorfman declined after the hearing to specify whether Ramos had actually admitted to driving the vehicle from the scene of the shootings.
Prosecutors have charged Ramos, who is being held on a no-bail status, with three counts of murder and multiple special allegations, including that the crime was committed in furtherance of a criminal street gang. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Bay City News